Departing Chair of the Parents' Association Stan Faure talks about his time at the helm
Some of our amazing volunteers at this year's Spring Fair, organised by the Parents' Association
The Chair of the Parents Association Stan Faure is stepping down from the role at the end of this term and handing over the reins to someone else after four years at the helm.
We caught up with Stan to find out about his experience heading up Bolingbrokes’s hard working and active Parents Association, what it entailed, and how he personally benefited.
How long have you been involved with the PA, and what have you got out of it?
I have been involved for the last four years, firstly as a volunteer for events, and then I joined the PA committee as Vice Chair, and then Chair. It is a fantastic learning experience as you develop a deep understanding of how the school is helping our children, and you get to support them directly.
What has your role involved?
As Chair you have to work closely with the school leadership team to understand the needs of the children and of the teachers. Then, with the help of the PA core team, you translate this into a set of events or projects during the year to collect funds for the various initiatives supporting our children; for example, educational tools, the school minibus, a school event or a specific need around sports or music.
You are also the voice of the parents and you need to bring together parents’ groups and ensure the communication lines with the school are always open. There is a lot of listening, problem solving and helping parents happening in the background. I am also a Parent Governor, representing parents at the school board. This gives insights on the school strategy and a way to support in a more long term way.
When are you stepping down?
At the end of the summer to allow the next PA Chair to start in September. However, I will remain as a parent governor until we find a replacement who does not need to be the PA chair but still a core team member of the PA committee.
How would you describe the role of the Bolingbroke PA?
It is mainly fundraising to support initiatives to help our children thrive, and develop their potential at school. It is also about addressing the parents’ questions and concerns in a positive and constructive way; we help parent groups and the school to work together and understand each other. It means a lot of listening, explaining, problem solving and project management.
Are you currently looking for more volunteers?
Yes, the current team are reaching the end of a cycle and all roles are currently open.
What skills do they require?
Project management, finance, communications, passion, energy and lots of patience!
How much time would they be expected to dedicate to the position?
As a PA chair you need to have fortnightly meetings with the core team for projects, monthly meetings with the head, and weekly follow up with parents, or for projects. A member of the PA core team would be more project driven and we end up interacting a lot via email and social media such as What’s App which make the time commitment more flexible and easier to manage.
How much has the PA raised for the school in the past few years and what are the biggest money-spinners?
In 2018/2019 we have raised over £17,000 and the year before that we had an even bigger year with an auction night which itself brought in about £20,000.
If anyone is interested in getting involved in the PA, what should they do?
Contact myself on firstname.lastname@example.org, or any member of the current team.
What about other parents who don’t want to commit to a full time position but are keen to help in other ways. How can they contribute?
There are two ways they can get involved.
They can join the core team which means more regular involvement, a vote for any decision including allocation of donations, closer involvement with the school and the ability to drive projects.
Secondly, you can be a volunteer to support or lead an event or project in close co-ordination with the PA team (for example, this years Spring Fair brought together around 100 volunteers.)